“While commending the SON, FCCPC and LASCOPA for rising up to their task, it bemoaned the fact that some of these agencies are not only understaffed, but most of them are also poorly financed leaving them to source for funds to carry out their responsibilities”
PEGASUS REPORTERS, LAGOS | NOVEMBER 28, 2022
The SON/GIZ Inverter Stakeholders Forum was held in Lagos on Thursday with participants baring their minds on the theme: Standards, Warranty, and Customer Satisfaction as Related to the Power Sector in Perspective.
Held under the auspices of the Nigerian Energy Support Programme II with support from the Standards Organization of Nigeria, the German International Development Corporation Agency, Lagos State Consumer Protection Agency (LASCOPA) and the Federal Competition & Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC), the forum examined issues relating mostly to the quality, maintenance, operation and care of batteries, inverters and solar panels available to the Nigerian consumer.
The paper presentation covering the theme of the discussion was presented by representatives of Standards Organization of Nigeria led by Mrs. Mosunmola Samuel while the major speakers and contributors at the forum included the Director General of SON, representatives of stakeholders in the power sector and members of the public in attendance.
The forum which devolved into a panel of discussants to examine the major issues raised included Mrs. Suzy Onwuka representing the FCCPC, the General Manager of LASCOPA Barrister Afolabi Soyebo, Mr. Wale Agboola Williams representing the media and consumers, Barrister Sebastine Udo, a consumer right activist, Engr. Olatunji Akintoye, Engr. Ugbaja and Mr Joshua Yari Garba of GIZ.
At the end of the forum, participants were unanimous in the call for standardized elecrtrical products. The forum also highlighted the fact that certain agencies of government responsible for the entry of imports into the country may have compromised in their duty to the nation and called on them to wake up to their assigned responsibility. The forum also knocked fraudulent importers who connived with foreign producers to produce and import substandard batteries and solar panels into Nigeria markets and concluded that relevant legislations should be strengthened to deal with the importers.
While commending the SON, FCCPC and LASCOPA for rising up to their task, it bemoaned the fact that some of these agencies are not only understaffed, but most of them are also poorly financed leaving them to source for funds to carry out their responsibilities. The forum also urged both the federal and state governments to ensure that the necessary support both financial and logistic is extended to the bodies. It praised the Lagos state government for setting up LASCOPA and urged other state to do the same to lessen the pressure of FCCPC.
It will be recalled that the Nigerian Energy Support Programme (NESP) is a technical assistance programme co-funded by the European Union and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and is jointly implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Power (FMP).
Nigerian Energy Support Programme (NESP) II was commissioned by German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) to tackle chronic shortage of electric power. Available data reveal that Nigeria has an installed electricity generation capacity of around 13,700 megawatts (in comparison: South Africa generates 51 gigawatts). Of this, only around 4,500 megawatts were available in 2021 due to gas and grid constraints and other technical issues. The slow performance of the public power sector has resulted in frequent power shortages, leaving large, medium and small enterprises (SMEs) as well as households without reliable electricity. Around 55 per cent of the population do not have access to electricity. In rural areas, this figure is as high as 60 per cent.
The Nigerian Energy Support Programme (NESP) therefore provides advisory services to key stakeholders with regard to energy policy and management and imparts technical knowledge in the following areas the areas of Data Management and Electrification Planning, it provides market intelligence and improved electrification planning procedures via the Nigeria SE4All website of the Federal Ministry of Power.
Other ares include Sustainable Energy Access, Enabling Environment for renewable energy and energy efficiency investments, Capacity Development and supports for the implementation of a national clean energy certification scheme and local training institutions in offering trainings on clean energy.
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